Steinbeck's son, Thomas Steinbeck, will deliver the reward himself. Steinbeck says his father was the "Michael Moore of his time."
The Steinbeck award is given every year to writers and artists whose work embodies the spirit of Steinbeck's values and belief in the dignity of the powerless and exploited.
Past recipients include Arthur Miller, Joan Baez, Bruce Springsteen, and Sean Penn.
Moore is a controversial filmmaker. His works include "Bowling for Columbine" and "Capitalism: A Love Story."